NAR Appraiser Survey July, 2023

In July 2023, NAR Research conducted a survey of all 9,800 appraiser members and 50,000 randomly-selected residential-focused non-appraiser members.

The survey results had a comparison of 2022 and 2023, which was very interesting.

  • Appraiser Topics
  • Greatest challenges in business
  • Lesser challenges with business
  • Valuations
  • Comfort with valuation tools
  • Radius in which appraisals are conducted
  • Radius by area type (rural, small town, urban, resort, suburban)
  • How often asked to conduct appraisals outside geographic area/Property type of expertise

Sample: Greatest challenges in business

(AMCs) in general among their greatest challenges. This year, this option was broken into three separate AMC-related issues. Forty-four percent cite at least one of these, with 28 percent specifically citing AMC requests for revisions.

This year, however, the single greatest challenge, cited by almost half (47 percent), is “fee pressures,” which, based on comments, is also related in many cases to pressure from AMCs. This is up sharply from 27 percent last year.

One-quarter (26 percent) cite technology fees (not an option in 2022). Appraisers are less likely this year to cite expanding regulations/interpretations of regulations, lender requirements, pressure from real estate agents/brokers, and liability concerns.

The 21 percent who cite other challenges are most likely to cite lack of business/slow market, rising interest rates, low fees, and to reiterate pressure from AMCs.

A very good graphic is included for each section.

To read the report, click here

My comments: Read the appraiser sections in the long report. Fortunately, appraiser results are in the first section. I read the full survey. Most of the questions were for all NAR members, both appraisers and non-appraiser members. Some may be of interest to you. Much of the appraiser results were what we already sort of suspected, but it is good to see actual survey results.

NAR Appraisal Survey 2022

Appraisal Business Tips 

Humor for Appraisers

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NOTE: Please scroll down to read the other topics in this long blog post on  GSE Appraisal Independence Update, Private money lender appraials, ADUs, adjustments, unusual homes, mortgage origination


AZULIK Residences

The AZULIK Residences architecture seeks to awaken reflection, maintaining its philosophy by integrating biomimetic shapes, hand-made details, and establishing a permanent dialogue with nature. The volumetry is always in continuous movement. The architectural design avoids lines and straight angles to establish the idea of continuous fluidity.

At the same time, concrete finishes merge various construction techniques and artisan approaches that give the feeling of carved stones, whose volumes and shapes vary, but always integrated harmoniously in these habitable sculptures.

To read more click here

My comments: Definitely an appraisal challenge!


GSE FAQs: Appraiser Independence (AIR) (Aug. 2023)

Updated August 2, 2023

Excerpts: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (government sponsored enterprises or GSEs) published their Appraiser Independence Requirements in October 2010. Updates to AIR and these FAQs were published in August 2023.

Note: Changes since the last update are marked either NEW or UPDATED. Minor (non-substantive) wording, number, and heading changes are not marked.

Appraiser selection criteria sample

10. May a representative of the lender provide an appraisal management company a list or a panel of appraisers to use for loans involving a specified mortgage broker, real estate agent, or loan officer? UPDATED

No. No one is allowed to provide a list or a panel of appraisers to use for loans involving a specified mortgage broker, real estate agent, or loan officer? See AIR sections I.B.(9) and IV.A.

From Dave Towne: Over the years, many appraisers have reported being blacklisted by real estate agents and even mortgage brokers. This typically happens when an appraiser turns in an appraisal with an appraised value opinion lower than the sale contract price. The agents and brokers then attempt to, or actually do, prevent that appraiser from doing future assignments when those people are involved.

To read more, click here 

My comments: worth reading, or skimming. Having changes indicated in red really helps!  Richard Hagar, SRA, has a good book on Dave Towne’s comments (and many other client issues): For more info click here


Private money lending – no UAD, computer “reviews”, low fees, etc. Totally different than AMCs!

Coming in the October issue of Appraisal Today!

Many appraisers don’t want to do non-lender work such as divorces or even easy appraisals such as estates as they have only done lender appraisals for AMCs. There is another lender option – private money lenders. Few appraisers who work for them, so there is little competition.

Private money lenders are the lenders who can close deals fast and count on the real estate equity as collateral. They depend on an accurate value. The property and/or borrower cannot get a conventional loan. They have always been available, mostly for short term financing and borrowers with poor credit or no credit history.

Remember the old mortgage broker days of visiting an office and chatting with loan officers? You can do this for private money lenders also.

The article includes lots of marketing tips, such as how to find the lenders, they want an accurate value and full disclosures, etc.

To read more about this topic, plus 2+ years of previous issues, subscribe to the paid Appraisal Today.

If this article helped you understand private money lending and get appraisals, it is worth the subscription price!


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If you are a paid subscriber and did not get the September 2023 issue emailed on Friday, September 1, please email, and we will send it to you!! Or hit the reply button. Be sure to put in a comment requesting it.


What Does Arm’s Length Mean in Real Estate?
The 7 Sale Types Explained

Excerpts: As a real estate appraiser, it is imperative to know whether a transaction is an arms-length sale, a non-arm’s length sale, or a different type of sale. Properties sold due to a job relocation, estate settlement, foreclosure, or divorce may sell for less than market value. Therefore, whether you’re considering the current terms of sale or analyzing previous sales of the subject property or comparables, you must take the sale type into consideration.

A non-arm’s length sale in real estate is a transaction between a seller and buyer who have a connection by marriage, family, work, etc. Because of their relationship, each party may not be acting in their own best interests. Therefore, the final price may not reflect the market value of the property.

The type of sale can provide some clarity into whether the transaction was (or currently is) an arm’s length transaction, whether a comparable sale should be used, or whether an adjustment is warranted for the terms of sale for a comparable. By knowing the type of sale, you are better able to reconcile a current opinion of market value that falls above or below a current or recent transaction for the subject property.

For appraisals required to be Uniform Appraisal Dataset (UAD) compliant, you must indicate the type of sale for the transaction. You may report any other relevant information regarding the sale type in the appraisal report, including whether more than one sale type applies.

To read more, click here

My comment: This is important for the subject and the comps. Don’t just skip it to save some time, or you don’t know how to identify them. It usually takes a few phone calls and close listening.


ADUs could be sold separately from homes under bill passed by California Legislature

Excerpts: Two state bills that could boost construction of ADUs, or accessory dwelling units, moved to the governor’s desk Monday.

AB1033, by Assembly Member Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, allows cities to decide whether property owners can sell ADUs separately, as condos, from the primary home.

Another Ting measure, AB976, also passed and would permanently ban local ordinances that require property owners to live in their ADU — effectively removing barriers that would otherwise prohibit ADUs to be used as rental properties.

To read more, click here

Comment from Joe Lynch: These laws under consideration are significant for residential appraisers in California. One proposes that jurisdictions have the authority to allow ADUs to be sold separately from main homes. Another prohibits owner occupancy requirements.

My comment: Another way to increase affordable homes and allow easier new ADU construction. HBU issue, of course. Much easier than the very complicated method for somehow dividing up and lot and putting more units there. HBU issue – very complicated! Relatively few of these have been done, as far as I know.


$820K Midcentury Home With Hyperbolic Paraboloid Roof a Rural Utah Town

4 bedroom, 2.5+ bath, 2,888 square feet, 0.73acre lot

Excerpts: Listed for $820,000, the structure was designed by architect Gilbert Eugene Haycock as his personal residence in 1967. Known locally as The Glass House, the iconic 2,888-square-foot home has had only one owner.

“The roof acts more like a bridge with its unique design,” says listing agent Heather Maughan, of North Realty. “When you walk in, there are partitions of room walls that do not go to the ceiling. It is about 3 feet below the ceiling, so it’s a very flowy, open space. Walls are usually
Inside, the Frank Lloyd Wright–inspired, four-bedroom home looks exactly the way it did when it was built decades ago. From the brightly colored shag rug to the Formica countertops, the retro interior offers a peek back
“Everything in the home is original,” Maughan notes. “The fridge and range were original colors, but over time, those had to be replaced. There is also linoleum in the laundry room, office, hallway, and kitchen, and it’s in great shape.”

Clean lines can be found throughout the home. Vaulted ceilings are clad in natural wood. Enormous walls of glass offer views of the backyard and beyond. Built-ins are plentiful, including one adjacent to the windows that stretch from the kitchen to the office.

To read more, click here

My comments: The first time I have seen “Hyperbolic Paraboloid Roof” applied to a house.


HOW TO USE THE NUMBERS BELOW. Appraisals are ordered after the loan application. These numbers tell you the future for the next few weeks. For more information on how they are compiled, click here.Note: I publish a graph of this data every month in my paid monthly newsletter, Appraisal Today. For more information or get a FREE sample go to Or call 510-865-8041, MTW, 7 AM to noon, Pacific time.

My comments: Rates are going up and down. Some appraisers are very busy, and others have little work. Varies widely around the country.


Mortgage applications decreased 0.8 percent from one week earlier

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 13, 2023) — Mortgage applications decreased 0.8 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending September 8, 2023. This week’s results included an adjustment for the Labor Day holiday.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 0.8 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 12 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 5 percent from the previous week and was 31 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 1 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 11 percent compared with the previous week and was 27 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“Mortgage applications decreased for the seventh time in eight weeks, reaching the lowest level since 1996. Last week’s decline was driven by a 5 percent drop in refinance applications to the weakest reading since January 2023,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “The 30-year fixed mortgage rate increased to 7.27 percent last week and was 40 basis points higher than where it was in late July. Purchase applications increased over the week despite the increase in rates, pushed higher by a 2 percent gain in conventional loans. Given how high rates are right now, there continues to be minimal refinance activity and a reduced incentive for homeowners to sell and buy a new home at a higher rate.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 29.1 percent of total applications from 30.0 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 7.5 percent of total applications.

The FHA share of total applications increased to 14.2 percent from 13.7 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications remained unchanged at 11.3 percent from the week prior. The USDA share of total applications decreased to 0.4 percent from 0.6 percent the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($726,200 or less) increased to 7.27 percent from 7.21 percent, with points increasing to 0.72 from 0.69 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $726,200) increased to 7.25 percent from 7.21 percent, with points decreasing to 0.72 from 0.76 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 7.04 percent from 7.03 percent, with points increasing to 0.98 from 0.95 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 6.72 percent from 6.66 percent, with points increasing to 1.01 from 0.86 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 6.59 percent from 6.33 percent, with points increasing to 1.16 from 1.11 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks, and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks, and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.


Ann O’Rourke, MAI, SRA, MBA
Appraiser and Publisher Appraisal Today
1826 Clement Ave. Suite 203 Alameda, CA 94501
Phone 510-865-8041

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